Why America Is Moving Left

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The Atlantic
By Peter Beinart
Dec. 23, 2015

Over roughly the past 18 months, the following events have transfixed the nation.

In July 2014, Eric Garner, an African American man reportedly selling loose cigarettes illegally, was choked to death by a New York City policeman.

That August, a white police officer, Darren Wilson, shot and killed an African American teenager, Michael Brown, in Ferguson, Missouri. For close to two weeks, protesters battled police clad in military gear. Missouri’s governor said the city looked like a war zone.

In December, an African American man with a criminal record avenged Garner’s and Brown’s deaths by murdering two New York City police officers. At the officers’ funerals, hundreds of police turned their backs on New York’s liberal mayor, Bill de Blasio.

In April 2015 another young African American man, Freddie Gray, died in police custody, in Baltimore. In the chaos that followed, 200 businesses were destroyed, 113 police officers were injured, and 486 people were arrested. To avoid further violence, a game between the Baltimore Orioles and the Chicago White Sox was postponed twice, then played in an empty stadium with police sirens audible in the distance.

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